Ray Sangston writes: Hey, cut the cr-p about Chris Masters (yesterday, editorial). The SMH chose to run that lead, not him. The Age went with something completely different and far weightier. For Masters not to explore how Jones’ s-xuality affects his relationships with other people and the world in general would be ridiculous. The bull-sh-t about privacy doesn’t mean a thing. Jones puts himself out there — in spades — let’s not run for cover when someone confronts him on his own terms.

Matthew Smith writes: From what I’ve seen, those people who think Chris Masters went too far with the homos-xual angle in his book on Alan Jones seem to themselves be straight (I could be wrong, but that’s my observation). For years Alan Jones has publicly supported many politicians who have sought to restrain the rights of openly gay members of our society — John Howard, Tony Abbott, Pauline Hanson, George Bush Jnr. Presumably many of those politicians knew that Alan’s orientation wasn’t straight, but he kept mum about it, and would never dare make an issue of gay rights, and that made him okay with them. He’s the kind of gay person (completely in the closet) that conservative politicians don’t mind being seen in public with. Congrats to Chris Masters for refusing to tread around the issue, like so many have politely done before. Now all we need is for future books on other powerful Australians to be just as honest.

Diana Shogren writes: Crikey missed the point on this issue. While teaching at King’s, Jones wrote a love letter to a schoolboy. If a male teacher were discovered to have done that to a girl pupil, his action would at the very least be roundly condemned as inappropriate. The declaration of affection, especially when its object is, as in a pupil-teacher relationship, the junior in a power relationship, can lead to emotional manipulation, a form of abuse. Quite apart from the effect upon the boy concerned, the fact that the letter was written at all shows a lack of moral judgment on Jones’s part. Masters hasn’t accused Jones of paedophilia. He has suggested Jones exercised emotional pressure as a form of repressed homos-xuality, playing favourites among his pupils and directing intense devotion toward a select few of the sportsmen he coached. That behaviour appears to have been divisive and, according to the accounts of some who observed it, created feelings of unease among those he taught and coached. In an account of the life of someone widely believed influential in high places and who sometimes takes the high moral ground in matters of public controversy, surely these issues merit serious analysis.

Chris Ridings writes: One would have had to be as thick as a brick not to have picked the bias on commercial TV against Chris Masters’ Jonestown. The ABC gave the best coverage with Kerry O’Brien interviewing him on the 7.30 Report. The commercial presentations only confirmed the belief that the Parrot gets on the blower to the producers of those channels so that they interview his own buddies about the book and not Masters himself. Alan Jones’ s-xuality was public knowledge before the book, so why is it used as a smokescreen now the book is out?

Don Allan writes: What kind of world are we living in? For days now, the media has persisted in calling Alan Jones a homos-xual. Is he? Certainly there’s a lot of inference but where is the evidence? Now I don’t know Alan Jones and I’m not homos-xual (you’ll have to take my word for that) although I do love my fellow man. But when I see gossip and innuendo in the guise of news or objective reporting being used to discredit a man, the love I have for my fellow man takes a battering. Leave the man alone!

Ben Knight writes: Language changes with usage and time; and where we need a new word, I’m all for adopting them from other dialects. But yesterday’s headline “The big T3 tax lurk that could bite the government in the butt” makes me all nostalgic for the vernacular term “bum”. I’d hate to see it disappear. Please don’t help it along to extinction.

Allan Lehepuu writes: Would Ru Hartwell (yesterday, comments) expand on the management practices that treeflights.com would implement to protect the trees for 80 to 100 years. Most of the Tax break plantations of the past 20 years are seriously deficient in their fire management protocols to the extent that most have no chance of surviving a fire. I would assume that this would defeat the purpose of the exercise.

Cameron Sharrock writes: All your articles re Schumacher have lacked two, in my opinion critical, points. First – he got his F1 drive as a result of punting Mika Hakkinen (at all times a superior driver and the only contemporary of which Schu was both afraid and second to) out of the Macau GP back in the early 90s, and secondly – from Ayrton’s death up until the time at which he would reasonably have retired (say 2000) Schu was only ever the best of the rest. So long, #2…

Michael Walker writes: Re. “Have the Dragons learnt their lesson?” I thought Mark Price’s appointment was ludicrous to begin with. Why on earth has no team given the time of day to Boomers assistant, NSWIS head coach, Australian Men’s Emu’s ex-head coach and twice Nike Hoop Summit World Select Team coach – Rob Beveridge. He is also an ex AIS scholarship coach and was an assistant coach to Australian Womens wheelchair basketball team at the 2000 Sydney Paralympics. Rob has experience in spades – and at the highest levels. Not once did I see his name mentioned in relation to the Dragons pre-season nor with any other NBL club looking for a real coach and not a dried up hack of an ex-player.

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